Australian Rail Track Corporation to carry out works on North-East line in May and June

THE Victorian Government’s growing impatience on the commencement of the $235 million upgrade of the North-East railway corridor has been placated to a small degree.

Federal transport minister Michael McCormack.

Federal transport minister Michael McCormack.

Even though the scope of works still has not been publicly released, Victorian public transport minister Jacinta Allan welcomed a commitment from the track owner, Australian Rail Track Corporation, on Friday to carry out some immediate works and an assurance community consultations would be held shortly.

Federal infrastructure minister Michael McCormack said community consultation on the scope of works would begin in less than a fortnight and the ARTC and Transport for Victoria to present at the upcoming Hume Corridor Passenger group meeting on May 24.

“Separate to the North-East Victorian line upgrade, I am also pleased to advise the ARTC are investing in additional track tamping works throughout May and June to improve V/Line passenger service performance,” he said.

Ms Allan welcomed the progress made by the steering committee and the co-operation with ARTC to consider options to improve the immediate passenger experience.

Jacinta Allan

Jacinta Allan

“With several train faults, delays and cancellations over a number of months, the Victorian Government has also asked V/Line to review the causes and provide advice on what steps needed to  be taken to provide a better service for both passengers and staff,” she said.

“There are a range of factors that contribute to poor V/Line performance such as track condition, signalling faults, passenger delays and rolling stock maintenance.

“This data is also being used to inform and prioritise the scope of works and the delivery schedule for the North East Line project.

“Once we have the scope and schedule of works finalised, the Victorian Government will know the timeframe for new trains to be ready on the upgraded track.”

The steering committee met this week with partners including the ARTC, V/Line, Public Transport Victoria, Rail Projects Victoria and VicTrack.